Pannun Assassination Row: 'Move Czech Court', Says SC To Accused Nikhil Gupta's Family

52-Year-old Nikhil Gupta has been detained in Prague since June for his alleged involvement in the assassination plot against Sikh leader Gurpatwant Singh Pannun in American soil.

Pro-Khalistani leader Gurpatwant Singh Pannun

After the family of 52-year-old Nikhil Gupta, the accused in an alleged murder plot against Sikh leader Gurpatwant Singh Pannun,  approached the Supreme Court on Friday seeking directions to the Ministry of External Affairs and Ministry of Home Affairs for help and intervention with Czech authorities, the apex court asked the family to move Czech court.

Nikhil Gupta has been detained in Prague since June for his alleged involvement in the assassination plot against Pannun.

The plea filed by Gupta's family was heard by a bench headed by Justice Sanjeev Khanna and Justice SVN Bhatti today. 

All about the petition seeking help

The petition by the family in the Supreme Court read, “The petitioner, being a law-abiding Indian citizen, has been detained in a foreign prison facility at Prague where he has a grave threat to his life." The family sought help on grounds of human rights violation, stating that Gupta has remained in illegal custody since June, with no help being extended by the Ministry of External Affairs despite repeated requests.

In the petition, the family further noted that, “Since June 30, 2023, he has been in illegal custody of the Czech authorities, facing an alleged political vendetta between the US and Indian governments. He argues that the extradition proceedings initiated in Prague have been marred by procedural failures, highlighting the absence of an arrest warrant, lack of fair representation, and denial of basic rights, rendering the trial anything but fair."

As per media reports, the plea also emphasised on violation of human rights, illegal detention, denial of basic religious rights and other issues regarding his detention and arrest by the Czech authorities and the USA.

The Ministry of Justice of the Czech Republic has confirmed the arrest and provisional custody of Nikhil Gupta.